4. Spend 10 minutes being mindful
“Practicing mindfulness helps us put distance between us and our unhelpful thoughts, feelings, and circumstances,” Friesen explains. “It strengthens what we call our ‘observing self,’ which helps you be less influenced by your circumstances, urges, moods, pains, and thoughts, and have more space between stimulus and response.” And in the short-term, taking the time to be mindful can help you reset, re-establish goals, and re-energize for positive performance, Carr adds.
You can do it one of two ways: Carr suggests completely unplugging, closing your eyes, and focusing on deep breathing and a calming cue word (e.g., “relax,” “exhale”) for 5-10 minutes. Another route is to choose one activity you can do with no distractions—drinking your morning cup of coffee at home, or taking a shower. Close your eyes and focus on nothing more than your breath and your senses for 5-10 minutes, Friesen suggests.
Carr recommends aiming for practicing intentional relaxation 3-4 times a week for the first three months to help establish regular and consistent practice. That regular practice will start to infiltrate your everyday routine, and eventually teach you to be more mindful in stressful situations. Follow these cues: noticing, unhooking, accepting, and refocusing, Friesen adds.
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